As part of our mandate to facilitate dialogue the TRCM engaged in two major informative panels during this fiscal year. These panels addressed issues related to Treaties and the Treaty Relationship.
For more than three centuries the Dakota have been referred to in literature as Sioux, American Indians and political refugees. However, according to the Dakota their original homeland is now encompassed by the provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta as well as the states of Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. This panel addressed issues such as: Treaty relations between the Dakota, Crown and other First Nations; territorial and resource rights; the Minnesota Conflict; and Dakota oral history. Panellists included: Elder Doris Pratt, Treaty Commissioner James Wilson, Chief Darcy Bear, Katherine Whitecloud and Dennis White Bird.
Through this panel our goal was to create an opportunity for people to learn about First Nation Economic Development Zones from people who have experienced their success first hand. Saskatoon has enjoyed the benefits of First Nation Economic Development Zones since having first estab- lished one in 1988, now known as the McKnight Commercial Centre. We invited post-secondary students, professionals from all levels of government, as well as First Nation community members to attend this panel. The Panellists shared their experiences with First Nation Economic Development Zones and how the Zones helped to build positive relationships, cre- ated economic growth,and benefited the community at large. The panellists were the Mayor of Saskatoon, His Worship Donald J. Atchinson and Councillor for the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation Harry Lafond.